Dem senator praises Ford opening the door to testifying

Sen. Patrick LeahyPatrick Joseph LeahyThe Hill's Morning Report — Biden steadies in third debate as top tier remains the same Overnight Defense: Dems grill Trump Army, Air Force picks | House chair subpoenas Trump Afghanistan negotiator | Trump officials release military aid to Ukraine On The Money: Trump delays increase in China tariffs until Oct. 15 | Treasury says US deficit topped trillion in 11 months | Defense spending bill advances over Democratic wall objections MORE (D-Vt.) on Thursday praised Christine Blasey Ford for opening the door to testifying next week on her allegations against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

“I just heard she's offered to come, I think that is a good thing," Leahy, a senior member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, told Hill.TV.

Ford's lawyer said in an email to the Senate panel on Thursday that she would be open to testifying next week under "terms that are fair and which ensure her safety.”

Republicans have pushed for Ford to appear for a hearing on Monday. Her lawyer told the committee that an appearance on Monday "is not possible," adding "the committee’s insistence that it occur then is arbitrary in any event.” 

Leahy pushed back on GOP efforts to speak with Ford as soon as possible, accusing Republicans of "trying to rush this through so fast." 

The Democratic senator pushed back when pressed on Sen. Dianne FeinsteinDianne Emiel FeinsteinGrassley: Kavanaugh classmate didn't contact Senate panel Trump court pick sparks frustration for refusing to answer questions This week: Congress returns for first time since mass shootings MORE's (D-Calif.) decision to hold onto a letter from Ford for weeks before it was eventually reported in the press. 

“Come on, come on,” Leahy said.

“We've never had a time when it's been rushed like this and they know it, these are the same people that held up an Obama nominee for over a year – for one who would have won easily, Merrick GarlandMerrick Brian GarlandSupreme Court comes to Trump's aid on immigration Gorsuch: Those who don't have 'great confidence in America' should 'look elsewhere' Trump stacking lower courts MORE ... the double standard comes back to the same question – what are they trying to hide?” he said. 

Ford has accused Kavanaugh of pinning her down and trying to remove her clothes during a party in the 1980s when both were in high school. Kavanaugh has strongly denied the allegations. 


–– Molly Hooper